Philadelphia The University of Pennsylvania softball team had six student-athletes earn All-Ivy League honors. Freshman Annie Kinsey (West Hills, Calif./Louisville HS) and sophomore Steph Reichert (Gibbstown, N.J./Bishop Eustace) earned first-team status while Kaelin Ainley (Toms River, N.J./Toms River), Ann Ferracane (Latham, N.Y./Shaker), Brandi King (Winnetka, Calif./Cleveland) and Jen Nichols (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla./Cooper City) received honorable mention.
“I’m really pleased that these six individuals are being recognized and the Penn softball program is being recognized by the other coaches in the Ivy League,” Head Coach Leslie King Moore said. “I’m very pleased for Annie Kinsey making the first team as a freshman and being very much in the running for rookie of the year. I’m also glad that the Steph Reichert was able to make the first team as a designated player. It’s a difficult role to play and she was outstanding for us.”
Kinsey, the second baseman who started 38 games, was near the team and League-leaders in every offensive category. She finished her first season with a team-high .368 batting average, the third-best in the Ancient Eight and the sixth-highest in Penn history, 43 hits, 16 RBI, 55 total bases and an on-base percentage of .470. She was third on the team with 15 runs and struck out just twice in 117 at-bats to finish the season as the second-toughest batter to strikeout. She also recorded nine multi-hit games. Kinsey was named Ivy League Rookie of the Week on March 22 after an impressive hitting .455 with 11 total bases and three runs batted in and a run scored. In Penn's 9-4 victory over Lafayette at the Mizuno/Anderson Bash at the Beach on March 18, Kinsey went 4-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored. That same day, she went 2-for-3 with a RBI in Penn's 4-1 win over Saint Joseph's. Kinsey was named the team’s Offensive MVP and becomes Penn’s only first-team All-Ivy second baseman.
Reichert, the designated player, had a stellar season for the Red and Blue finishing her sophomore year with a .337 average with a team-high 17 runs scored and eight doubles. She posted seven multi-hit games. Against Rider on March 26, she was 4-for-4, including a grand slam, and five RBI en route to Ivy League Player of the Week honors. In the season finale at Yale on April 25, she went a combined 5-for-7 with three runs scored.
Ferracane made a definite impression during her rookie season. She went 7-7 with a 2.71 ERA and 81 strikeouts in 95.2 innings of work. She posted four or more strikeouts in 10 out of her 23 appearances with opponents hitting just .238 against the righthander. She was named Ivy League Rookie of the Week on March 29 after she threw a complete game, three-hitter and picked up a save in Penn’s doubleheader sweep of Rider. She also earned Penn Student-Athlete of the Week honors on April 17 as she was virtually untouchable on the mound posting a 0.60 ERA and 15 strikeouts while walking two in 11.2 innings. In Penn's 1-0 Ivy League win over Dartmouth, Ferracane tossed her fifth complete game of the season and her first collegiate shutout by fanning a career-high 13 batters and scattering six hits. Ferracane was named Penn’s Defensive MVP and the Player’s Player of the Year.
Ainley roamed the outfield and caught for the Quakers, starting all 37 games she appeared in. She finished the season fourth on the team with a .273 batting average and 27 hits, second in runs scored (16), third in RBI (13), drew a team-high 13 walks and stole four bases. She also had two home runs and four doubles.
King served primarily as the catcher for the Red and Blue starting 35 games. She hit .257 during her sophomore campaign with 15 runs batted in and 26 hits, including two triples and a home run. Against Robert Morris on March 10, she went 3-for-4 with four RBI and two runs scored. Against Lafayette on March 18, she hit a grand slam to finish the day 2-for-4 and help the Quakers to a 9-4 win.
Nichols, a junior, platooned in the outfield, at catcher and at shortstop appearing in 32 games, starting 26 contests. She hit .253 with 19 hits, including a team-best three home runs, and drove in a team-high 16 runs. Against Drexel on April 20, she went 2-for-3 with a homer, four RBI and two runs scored. She also drove in four runs against Delaware on March 16 with a grand slam.
The Red and Blue earned All-Ivy League first-team recognition for the first-time since 2000 and it’s the first time since 1994 in which Penn had six players earn nods. The Quakers, who had six freshmen and 12 sophomores on the squad, finished the 2005 season with a 14-25 overall record and a 4-10 mark in the Ivy League.
-Written by Kelly McCarthy, athletic communications assistant